BOSTON/Jamaica Plain - Sept. 16, 2010 - The Jamaica Plain Forum, a series of local and national speakers and public discussions sponsored by the Institute of Policy Studies and the First Unitarian Universalist Church in JP, hosted local journalist and author Michael Blanding on Thursday.
Blanding, a Contributing Editor at Boston Magazine has written for The Nation, The New Republic, and the Boston Globe among other publications.
His presentation on the crimes and misdemeanors of the Coca Cola Corporation and its affiliated bottling companies was timed to coincide with the publication of his first book: "The Coke Machine: The Dirty Truth Behind The World's Favorite Soft Drink." (Avery/Penguin)
Among the author's discoveries: company complicity in the torture and murder of union organizers at bottling plants in Columbia and the literal draining of water supplies from villages in India.
During the four years he took to research the book, said Blanding, he was granted a 45 minute interview with a Coke spokesperson. But once he revealed the sorts of questions he was pursuing, the company refused to return his calls.